When I was kid we didn't have pancakes often, but I have fond memories of weekend mornings when my mother wasn't working and the day started slowly. She would rarely make pancakes, but when she did, my sister and I were thrilled. Sometimes I remember my sister and I would help make the pancakes, but most of the time we simply clamored for more. It was a kind of family time that families don't have enough of. It was perfect and beautiful in its simplicity.
Kids love pancakes, and mine are no different. What better way to enjoy some family time in the morning than making and eating pancakes with real, Michigan maple syrup? Now, pancakes are a favorite around our house, though we don't have them a lot. Though delicious, they aren't the healthiest breakfast option.
As an aside, when the twins were much smaller and first eating pancakes, I read the label on the box of pancake mix and then read the recipe in Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything, our most trusted cookbook. Well, if you read my post on Cool Whip, you know the story: ingredients that sound like petrochemicals vs. a short simple list of ingredients your grandmother would recognize as food. So we started making our pancakes from scratch, including the baking powder.
One day while trolling the interwebs, I stumbled across Jim's Pancakes. Wow was that a revelation, so with the goal of turning a family event into a foodie family event, we made a humble attempt at shaped pancakes. Here are a few of my first ones. The later ones were a bit better, but I don't have pictures of those; things got a bit chaotic in the kitchen around that time.
For a first go, I'm pleased. I wish I had pictures of the ones the boys made. I hadn't had my coffee yet, so I'll use that as an excuse for not having better pictures. Jim's pancakes put mine to shame, but I have something to aspire to. When I start making more complicated architectural pancakes, I'll be happy, but seeing the smiles on my boys faces this morning as they made their own car and dinosaur pancakes was perfect and beautiful in its simplicity.